With all the news today about Joel Embiid, which we tried to cover blow by blow, Chad Ford of ESPN has updated his 2014 NBA Mock Draft to reflect that information. He came out with version 8.1 (Insider, Costs $) as only the first 4 picks have changed. Lets see who he has the Cleveland Cavaliers selecting now:
Andrew Wiggins Cleveland Cavaliers (33 – 49)COLLEGE: Kansas HT: 6-8 WT: 200 POS: SGEmbiid was the heavy favorite to be the top pick before Thursday’s news of the stress fracture in his foot, which will require surgery. Sources in Cleveland say it is now very unlikely the Cavaliers would take him No. 1. Like any team, they will want to see the medical report after the surgery, but this has seriously dampened their enthusiasm for Embiid. That leaves two prospects — Wiggins and Jabari Parker. Wiggins worked out for the Cavs on Wednesday and was impressive, according to sources. Although he didn’t shoot the ball well, he has improved his ballhandling and showed off his explosive athleticism. The Cavs believe he will be a good shooter in time; there’s nothing wrong with his form. Wiggins has similar upside to Embiid. And Wiggins can be a defensive presence for the Cavs from day one.
Parker will work out for the Cavs on Friday. There is a vocal faction within the organization pushing for Parker to be the pick. He is the most NBA-ready, and the Cavs are in a win-now mode. For now, we believe Wiggins offers the best combination upside, plus impact.
As expected Embiid is not at #1 anymore. Wiggins currently has that spot and Ford makes some great points about how he would fit with the Cavs immediately. The concern comes if the Cavs decide to go for the right now pick of Parker instead. Neither player should be ridiculed like last year’s pick but Embiid’s injury makes things difficult. Most Cavs fans were led to believe he was the pick, which isn’t for sure, and now that has been taken away.
Ford then has the Bucks taking Parker, the 76ers taking Exum (believing they will try to trade MCW) and the Magic finally taking Embiid. Could the Cavs come calling to try to get the 3rd or 4th pick? Surely they can, and probably will. The likelihood of them making a deal is slim. Could the Magic want to pair Dion Waiters with Victor Oladipo to form an athletic offense/defense set of guards? Could Tristan Thompson be the athletic player Ford thinks they need in the frontcourt?
Anything is possible but right now Wiggins seems to be the leader in the clubhouse.
Do you agree with Ford?